Choosing a Pool CueWhen it comes to choosing a pool cue, it’s difficult to tell if you’d like a cue stick just by reading about it. The terms that people use to describe characteristics (hard, soft, harsh, stiff, forgiving, well-balanced, etc.) are subjective and difficult to quantify. Some important things can be quantified (length, weight, balance point, shaft taper, shaft diameter, squirt), but they’re not the whole story. If you’re a beginner, or working on your game, you can expect your preferences to change as your game matures.

Beginners might use sticks provided by the place they play. But if you want to improve your game, you need to choose your own cue and decide to own it! That avoids the problem of adjusting to the length of the cue, the weight or diameter of the tip.

It’s important to take note of the type of cue that feels most comfortable. Experiment. Examine weight and length, and the diameter of the tip. After you’ve decided, you’re ready to buy.

Some points to consider in choosing a pool cue :

First, make sure that the pool cue stick is straight. Although most of the production cues are straight, it’s always good to check. Just roll the cue stick on a flat surface, if it’s crooked you’ll notice right away. Another way is to look at the butt end of the cue while pointing the other end downwards, roll it a few times and you should be able to notice if it is straight or not. Second, consider the weight of the cue stick. Typically, a cue stick weighs between 18 to 21 ounces. Find out what weight is comfortable for you. Third, the length of the cue stick is dependent on the length of your arm. Longer arms, longer stick. The length of production cues typically starts at 57 inches.

If you’d like to customize it a bit, getting a two-part cue will add about $30 to your price. You can also add leather grips and decorations. A rule of thumb is if you pay more than $100 for a cue stick, you are paying for brand and ornamentation, not so much quality. A good tip is probably more important than the cue. Shun a cue that’s more than two parts, has a screw-on tip, is painted in festive colors, or is made in Taiwan. Made in Japan is OK, the Adam line is one of the best. Get the best tips you can, the return on the money you spend is greater there than anywhere else. Seek good construction over looks. Compare sticks before choosing one that catches your eye. Feel comfortable with the weight & length. You’ll be using this stick for years, so be sure your investment is right for you.

How Pool cues are made  >